New Orleans, Louisiana
June 26, 2016
June 26, 2016
August 28, 2016
Engineering Physics & Physics
This paper describes a student team project using model rockets and engines to learn engineering solution methods for determining the apogee of model rocket when the drag effect is considered explicitly instead of estimating its effect later. Model rocketry is a powerful tool for instructors who wish to incorporate science, engineering, and mathematics into a fun, engaging, and challenging activity for the students. The apogee can be determined using a number of distinct methods: trigonometry, onboard altimeters, analytical calculations, and simulation. This paper emphasizes numerical analytical solution using spreadsheet programming instead of a full analytical solution that requires higher mathematics. Students got a practical introduction to many engineering concepts they will later study. These concepts include thrust, impulse, drag, payload, ascent and descent (with and without a parachute) times, speed, and acceleration. The importance of the future courses in physics was also emphasized. These activities constitute one of two team projects of 1.5 credit portion of a two-credit course in exploration of engineering and technology. Students learn many skills they need later in their studies and professional practice. Teamwork is a skill that they acquired as they organized into a group with many specialized responsibilities for the purpose of launching their rockets, collecting data to be processed and, writing a report. Students also learned or improved spreadsheet skills while performing data entry and necessary mathematical calculations.
Sarper, H., & Landman, D., & Vahala, L. (2016, June), First-year Project Experience in Aerospace: Apogee Determination of Model Rockets with Explicit Consideration of Drag Effect Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.26910
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2016 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015